The Pitt wrestling team absorbed another huge blow just two days after the conclusion of the 2016-2017 season, as 165-pound ACC Champion TeShan Campbell announced his intention to transfer to Ohio State University.
“Pitt Wrestling, you showed me so much over these two past years — we made some great memories! I wish nothing but great things for this program in the future,” Campbell wrote Monday on his Facebook page. “I thought hard on this decision and it wasn’t an easy one, but I believe in my heart it is the right one. I will be finishing my college academic and wrestling career at the University of Ohio State (sic).”
Julie Jurich, assistant director of media relations at Pitt, confirmed Monday that Campbell has been granted his release.
Campbell is a sophomore from Pittsburgh who established himself as the face of the program along with fellow local product Dom Forys. Campbell worked his way up from a runner-up in the City League Championships in his first year at Westinghouse High School to a PIAA champion as a senior at Penn Hills High School.
At Pitt, he became an NCAA qualifier as a true freshman in 2016 before capturing the 165-pound ACC Championship in 2017. He went 2-2 at the 2017 NCAA Championships, falling two wins short of becoming an All-American after losing a couple of hard-fought decisions against top-15 opponents.
The Panthers endured a midseason coaching change, absences of multiple key wrestlers and a 0-3 start to ACC competition to finish the season in impressive fashion. Three Pitt wrestlers took home individual titles at the 2017 ACC Championships, and four Panthers qualified for the NCAA Championships, which wrapped up Saturday in St. Louis.
Although none of the Pitt wrestlers achieved All-American status, all four of the NCAA qualifiers have at least one year of eligibility remaining.
Before Campbell’s announcement, next year’s team seemed poised to boast the Panthers’ most loaded roster in years. Campbell would have been a key centerpiece after posting a 20-2 regular-season record on his way to his first ACC title.
Now, with Campbell’s upcoming transfer and uncertainty about who will be coaching the team next year, the program has several holes to fill moving forward.